4 CommentsMonogatari Series: Second Season / By Scamp /

Monogatari Series Second Season episode 24 – Legacy building

vlcsnap-2013-12-19-22h28m15s120I like this scene because Kaiki holds the phone in a vaguely similar way to L from Death Note. Like if he gripped it properly it would contaminate his hand so he has to gingerly grasp it between two fingers and hold it away from his face as though it might bite him at any moment. Except while in Death Note this was just another way of distinguishing L’s character, in Monogatari it’s more to do with its usual post-modern (phnar phnar) art style where what happens on screen doesn’t really matter while people are talking, so Kaiki doesn’t need to actually talk into the phone for us to understand that he’s talking to Senjogahara. It’s a pretty typical Monogatari thing, but it’s something I’ve always liked.

vlcsnap-2013-12-19-22h26m44s233Another re-occuring Kaiki theme. Mind-bending optical illusion backgrounds that make Kaiki disappear into the background. I really like his conversations with Senjogahara, this one in particular. Senjogahara is starting to make little bit of headway this time. Mocking Kaiki for calling her up at night by telling him the colour of her underwear, how silly he was for not realising the letter was posted under the doorway, flushing the evidence. She’s been busy training in the mountains so she can beat Kaiki in this tongue war (and no that’s not a fancy metaphor for french-kissing). Except instead of wrestling bears in the mountains, she’s been talking them into submission.

I will say though, and I know they’ve done this deliberately to garner this reaction so I’m annoyed I feel like this anyway, but I am really itching to get some proper Senjogahara on screen faffing about in her room. Having all her dialogue be spoken from single colour screens plus ripple effects isn’t the same. Plus I know the reason they do this is to troll Senjogahara fans like myself so congrats, but argh I want her on screen. I like Kaiki and all, but all we’ve got of Senjogahara this arc is her in the coffee shop, where she was deliberately unresponsive, and her wearing an adorable bobble hat in Mr Doughnut. Which is fun, but this season of Monogatari started with Senjogahara prancing about her room in her underwear pulling a variety of exciting poses. Can’t but help think the whole show has gone a bit downhill since then. I mean the whole season with the exception of Shinobu Time has been brilliant, but you don’t beat Senjogahara mucking about in her underwear.

vlcsnap-2013-12-19-22h23m43s189However we did get a Kaiki shower scene so that makes up for…wait a second, Kaiki has no nipples! Welp, that decides where Monogatari ends up in my end of year top 10. Was struggling to decide whether it was better than Psycho Pass, but Kougami had nipples so it’s automatically better.

vlcsnap-2013-12-19-22h34m21s195Glad to see Hanekawa has decided to stick with her monochrome hairdo. Gives her that lovely air of mystique. I know I like to go on about how she’s the Worst Girl, but to be honest I’d probably put that new light blue-haired girl as the Worst Girl now. Perhaps it’s because I’ve been shoving the Worst Girl label on her and I now see her as the underdog, but I’ve grown kinda fond of her. What I particularly liked about this episode was with the way she and Senjogahara talked to Kaiki, and what with them both travelling a lot to deal with oddities, they’re practically becoming the new generation of the Ghostbusters. I really like that conceit because it makes us feel like the passing of a generation. It gives the whole story of Monogatari a much nicer thread that makes it feel like all this work we’ve gone through has been worth it.

It’s a tough feeling to explain, but it’s like in Full Metal Alchemist where Winry realises how tall Ed has gotten, or in Legend of the Galactic Heroes when they bust Yang from prison and realise what a legendary figure this unassuming man has become. It suddenly makes all the earlier smaller stories you’ve been watching feel much weightier. It’s not as dramatic a story in Monogatari because it’s not on as big a scale, but it’s makes them feel like they’ve built a legacy. Even Araragi has this feeling, even if I now much prefer him as a formless off-screen entity. Mind you, this whole legacy building would be more effective if we actually saw the first arc. We’re still waiting Shaft.

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  1. Shikamaru
    Posted December 21, 2013 at 8:16 pm | Permalink

    I thought that Hanekawa was more interesting this time but the reason for that probably was the fact that she interacted with Kaiki. And the fact that we haven’t seen her for a while. I really miss Kanbaru.

    We need more series like Monogatari where the characters appear and disappear randomly. This way the characters don’t get stale, annoying or boring. Hanekawa isn’t that great character but it was nice to see her again. I didn’t like Mayoi that much either but the fact that I will never see her again makes me feel a little sad. Now that I haven’t seen Araragi for a while I want to see him appear again.

    I think it’s kind of genius how Monogatari handles all the story arcs and characters.

  2. Nagisa33
    Posted December 21, 2013 at 9:22 pm | Permalink

    I’m glad that Mayoi is out of the picture. With her always came the pedo material. It’s one less thing putting a damper on the experience.

    I know what you mean about characters disappearing and then reappearing with some change. For some reason, I felt that Hanekawa was going to do something fishy and put a wrench in the plan. She has been out of the picture for so long, and so much has happened that her alliance might have changed. She’s no longer the fully accepting person she once was, which led me to believe that she’d do something drastic to be with Araragi. It’s probably just my speculation running amuck.

    In any case, Hanekawa seemed more sure of herself and more likable this time.

  3. Redcrimson
    Posted December 21, 2013 at 10:08 pm | Permalink

    I really like how this episode contextualizes post-tiger Hanekawa’s character through Kaiki. Of all the characters that Kaiki has interacted with, Hanekawa is the only one he sees as an adult. And as a self-actualized adult, Hanekawa is the only one who can strip away Kaiki’s self-declared con-man persona. Kaiki even shrugs off Gaen, but he can hardly look Hanekawa in the eye. Because Hanekawa, like Kaiki, sees the world as it really is, not how she perceives it.

  4. Nagisa33
    Posted December 21, 2013 at 11:25 pm | Permalink

    Also, a shout out to the music in this episode and the newest one. The music got more intense as the tension was mounting.

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